Photo taken by infrared camera shows a wild leopard in eastern parts of southwest Chinas Tibet Autonomous Region. (Photo provided by Shanshui Conservation Center)
Images of snow leopards were caught for the first time in eastern parts of southwest Chinas Tibet Autonomous Region.
A total of 20 infrared cameras installed at a 100 square kilometers area in the Nujiang River valley captured footage of the cats several times since November, according to local authorities Monday.
We have captured images of baby leopards with their mother, which indicates a certain quantity of the rare species live in the region, said Zhao Xiang, head of the Shan Shui Conservation Center.
Snow leopards are a Class A protected animal in China and are classified as endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. They live in the Himalayas in central and south Asia at an altitude of 2,500 to 4,500 meters, with 60 percent of the population in China.
Local official said their appearance in the populous region in eastern Tibet showed efforts to protect the local ecosystem and biological diversity were successful.
A number of highland species, including red fox, white-lipped deer, Chinese serow and alpine musk deer were also spotted in the region.